The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

August 2, 2012

VIDEO: Tens of thousands of Vietnamese brave the heat at Marian Days

CARTHAGE, Mo. — Le Bee, 22, seemed to be having fun as a first-time visitor to Marian Days, snapping pictures with her friends and sampling the Vietnamese cuisine.

She also had a cold drink in her hand — a common sight, along with hand-held paper fans and umbrellas to shield the sun, at the festival as temperatures topped 100 degrees by Thursday afternoon.

“Oh my God,” the Detroit, Mich., resident said. “It’s so hot.”

Despite the triple-digit temperatures, tens of thousands of Catholics of Vietnamese descent are at the Congregation of the Mother Co-Redemptrix campus in Carthage for the annual Marian Days celebration, one of the country’s largest Roman Catholic festivals. Visitors from around the country, and some from outside the United States, will gather through Sunday for music, food and prayer as part of the festival, which focuses on devotion to Mary, Jesus’ mother.

Nghi Nguyen, an anesthesiologist from Pittsburgh, Pa., who was serving in the medical station, said he already had seen a few heat-related illnesses — heat stroke, headaches and dehydration — since arriving in Carthage on Tuesday.

“We got some patients with dehydration, and the heat further complicates the problem,” he said. “It’s very, very hot, I think.”

Nguyen said many visitors to Marian Days likely aren’t used to this kind of heat. Speaking from the air-conditioned sanctuary of his indoor medical station, he said he made the 18-hour drive from Pennsylvania for his 26th trip to Marian Days for two reasons.

“We feel that as Catholics, we worship God first, and secondly, we help people with Catholic norms,” he said. “That’s what I want to do, to come here so I can pray and help people.”

Viet Mai, an 18-year-old from Austin, Texas, was staying cool Thursday with a boba bubble tea, a fruit-and-smoothie mixture that contains tapioca pearls, a common ingredient in many Asian desserts and teas. He seemed to be tolerating the heat better than many of his counterparts.

“Ever since we moved to Texas, this is pretty good,” he said. “It’s a little humid, but it’s OK.”

Mai, who is camping at the church campus during the festival, said temperatures are more manageable at night, when they dip into the upper 70s.

“You just kind of have to stick it through,” he said.

Nearby, 21-year-old Cindy Lee, from the Houston, Texas, area, was beating the heat with a pennywort drink. Pennywort, she said, is a plant found in the swamps of Vietnam; when ground up and mixed with sugar, it can be refreshing.

“It’s the ‘cool drink’ — that’s what it translates as,” she said. “It’s actually made to cool you down.”

Lee said she skipped Marian Days for the past few years because of the heat, but she attended this year because her mother did not want to travel alone.

She also said she hasn’t always enjoyed Marian Days, but she has grown to support it because of her strong Vietnamese roots and the opportunity to unite with other young Vietnamese-Americans.

“It’s very communal here,” she said. “We’re really big on helping people in Vietnam because they don’t have a choice. That’s why all the kids, even all the gangsterized ones, will support that. We are here to build bridges because we choose to.”

Text Only
Local News
  • r072814dogbike.jpg Cross-country trip promotes animal adoption

    Where’s Bixby? Not the town in Oklahoma, but the dog on the back of a bicycle ridden by Mike Minnick. On Monday, the two were in Joplin, one stop on a cross-country bike trip to promote the adoption of dogs and cats from local shelters.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo

  • Seneca man draws concurrent term in sexual abuse case

    A 39-year-old man who sexually abused a girl over a four-year period in both Joplin and Seneca received a 15-year sentence Monday in Newton County that will run concurrently with a term he received earlier this year in Jasper County.

    July 28, 2014

  • Defendant who pulled knife on ER doctor sent for treatment

    A man accused of pulling a knife on a Freeman Hospital West emergency room doctor pleaded guilty to a reduced charge Monday and was sentenced to the state prison system’s Institutional Treatment Center.

    July 28, 2014

  • Judge lifts seal on records in Parsons quadruple slaying

    A judge has rescinded his order sealing court records in the case of David Bennett Jr., who is accused of killing a Parsons woman and her three children.

    July 28, 2014

  • Wal-Mart to build second local Neighborhood Market

    A second Wal-Mart Neighborhood Market store is planned for Joplin. The company has filed an application with the city to rezone nearly six acres of land on the west side of town in the tornado zone to build a new Neighborhood Market and gas station.

    July 28, 2014

  • r072814mailcar.jpg VIDEO: Train mail car trailered on Joplin's Main Street to Redings Mill

    With a police escort leading the way Monday, postal car No. 34 breezed through downtown Joplin en route to its new home in Redings Mill, where it was greeted by a welcome party of local residents and railroad enthusiasts.

    July 28, 2014 1 Photo 1 Slideshow

  • Anti-landfill group seeks grand jury probe

    As more than 200 people filed into Riverton High School on Sunday to attend an anti-landfill group meeting, many stopped to sign a petition asking the Cherokee County District Court to summon a grand jury to investigate how land was acquired by the city of Galena for a proposed landfill.

    July 27, 2014

  • 072814_jd anderson.jpg VIDEO: Noel strongman advances on talent show

    The past week has been busier than normal for Noel resident J.D. Anderson. Members of the production crew for NBC’s “America’s Got Talent” told him they have shot more footage of him than of other contestants for the next episode. “They said I have the busiest schedule of anyone this week,” Anderson told the Globe in a phone interview Friday. “There’s so many fun things you can do with B-roll as a strongman.”

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • AndraBryanStefanoni.jpg Andra Bryan Stefanoni: ‘Annie’ production is a family thing

    There’s a twist to this week’s production of “Annie” at Memorial Auditorium. The show, a beloved classic tale of an orphan girl in search of a family, is full of real-life family members.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • 072514 Band Box.jpg Jo Ellis: Carthage icon continues to play in local restaurant

    Chicago Coin’s Band-Box, also known as “Strike Up the Band,” has been a Carthage icon since the mid- to late 1950s. Any customer who frequented Red’s Diner, or Ray’s Cafe, and now the Pancake Hut is familiar with the pulsating rhythms and movements of this mechanical device.

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos

Must Read


Given that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that electronic devices and communications are protected from searches and seizure without a warrant, do you think Missouri needs Amendment 9 added to its constitution?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter